The Natural Heritage of Botswana

© Champagn Breakfast at Jao Camp. Okavango
Botswana is a country of superlatives - with is deserts, Deltas, spectacular wildlife and game parks that are pristine and well-managed. Botswana is a country sought after by tourists around the world, and it is one that is growing in stature with its secure economy and political stability.The economy of Botswana was built on its diamond and beef industries, but in recent years the tourism market has grown into the second largest industry in Botswana. Through sound conservation management practices nearly twenty percent of the country is gazetted wilderness areas, which has allowed the tourism industry to flourish.

From Desert to Delta

From the semi-arid landscapes of the legendary Kalahari Desert to the pristine waterways of the Okavango Delta, Botswana provides one of the most sought after African safari travel experiences. The Okavango Delta in Northern Botswana is a priceless natural heritage site renowned around the world for the diversity of the wildlife species and general beauty.

Despite this wealth of natural diversity, the country has remained in the background when it comes to the recognition of its heritage. In fact Botswana only has one site on the World Heritage Site list, and this is a little known place to the general public. This site is the sacred hills of Tsodilo in the north western region of the country.

The Tsodilo Hills are the sacred grounds of the first inhabitants of Botswana, the Bushmen people, and many have remarked on the spirituality of the place when they visit.
There are a number of places that have been submitted for proclamation as natural heritage sites but still awaiting clarification. These include:

  • Toutswemogala Hill Iron Age Settlement (1999)
  • Okavango Delta (2010)
  • Central Kalahari Game Reserve (2010)
  • Chobe Linyanti System (2010)
  • Gcwihaba Caves (2010)
  • Makgadikgadi Pans Landscape (2010)
  • Tswapong Hills Cultural Landscape (2010)
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